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Heavy Rain Previews Show Promise

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the blue-skies dept.

Games 84

As the February release date for Quantic Dream's Heavy Rain nears, several publications have gotten a chance for some hands-on time with the game and seem to be intrigued by what they saw. Quoting the Opposable Thumbs blog: "The game grabs you during the quiet moments where nothing 'happens.' When you look at a picture your child drew. When you're questioning someone about a crime. When you're trying to figure out how to react to a violent situation. The preview we were sent put me in different situations as I played a small handful of characters, and each one provided a few tiny moments that were surprising in terms of storytelling or subtlety." Eurogamer's previewer had a similar reaction: "To my great delight as well — Heavy Rain isn't a mature game because it has unhappy families and moody lighting, it's a mature game because it anticipates an adult response from the player and is prepared to receive it."

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84 comments

Can't wait (2, Funny)

Xaduurv (1685700) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470516)

I can't wait for the Nintendo DS Lite version of the game, "Light Rain"

Re:Can't wait (2, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470788)

I hear they're also making a mobile version exclusive to the LG Chocolate.

Re:Can't wait (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30471624)

The Wii version is already in the works - Heavy Rain Beach Resort Conga Party.

Re:Can't wait (1)

default luser (529332) | more than 4 years ago | (#30478448)

The Wii version is already in the works - Heavy Rain Beach Resort Conga Party.

Yeah, it will make use of the new Wii Motion Plus to give players a never-before experienced feeling of immersion.

When you're cooking dinner, you'll get 1:1 interaction with sharp implements. Don't slice-off your hands with your virtual Ginzu!

When you're using the restroom, you'll get 1:1 interaction with virtual genetailia! If you sprinkle when you tinkle, be a sweetie, wipe the seatie.

When your character dies, you'll get 1:1 interaction with a pine box being burned in a crematorium.


Don't let them burn me, James!
Jimmy, don't let them burn me!
I'm in here! Oh, God!
Don't let them do it!
Don't let them do it! I'm in here.
No!
I gotta live!
I wanna live!
Oh, God! I wanna live!
I wanna live!
I wanna live!

Re:Can't wait (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 4 years ago | (#30484096)

The Wii version is already in the works - Heavy Rain Heroes.

There fixed it for you

Wait that would be if it was a Maxis game.

Interesting (4, Interesting)

enderjsv (1128541) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470558)

From what I've seen of the game so far, I think I can honestly say without hyperbole that this game is the biggest and possibly most important experiment in the past 15 years of gaming. It really takes the whole idea of what is considered to be a game and breaks the mold. It actually reminds me a bit of Indigo Prophecy, but ten times more deviated from standard gameplay practices. I'm excited to see if it will work and how it will be received.

Re:Interesting (3, Insightful)

protodevilin (1304731) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470920)

My problem with Indigo Prophecy was that, while I expected the game to immerse me into an intriguing mystery-thriller plotline (which it did for the first half), I did not expect it to suddenly devolve into a silly SciFi Channel circus about space aliens and Mayan Kung-Fu ghost people. I was totally engrossed and throroughly impressed with Indigo Prophecy, and then quite abruptly my 'wow's became 'WTF's. I hope Heavy Rain doesn't make the same mistake.

Re:Interesting (1)

TrancePhreak (576593) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471004)

Did you ever play Eternal Darkness? It does a lot to shake the idea of what is allowed in a gaming experience. Similar to X-Men on the Genesis, where you had to reset the system to actually get the ending.

Re:Interesting (1)

ruemere (1148095) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471260)

Omikron: the Nomad Soul. Also by Quantic Dreams. ALso very commendable for experimental approach.

Regards,
Ruemere

Re:Interesting (2, Interesting)

Kagura (843695) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471266)

From what I've seen of the game so far, I think I can honestly say without hyperbole that this game is the biggest and possibly most important experiment in the past 15 years of gaming. It really takes the whole idea of what is considered to be a game and breaks the mold. It actually reminds me a bit of Indigo Prophecy, but ten times more deviated from standard gameplay practices. I'm excited to see if it will work and how it will be received.

Remember Spore before it came out? That's all I'll say until I actually have this game in my hands. I have learned my lesson about expecting too much.

Re:Interesting (4, Interesting)

eulernet (1132389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471652)

Don't expect too much !

Hint: I have been one of the programmers behind Omikron the Nomad Soul, their previous success.

The biggest problem with Omikron is that we spend a lot of time adjusting the gameplay on the first level, at the expense of the following levels.
Making the game appealing takes a lot of time, and when the game is too large (and not clearly defined), it takes an exponential amount of time.

Another big problem is that Omikron tried to merge several types of games: adventure, action and fight.
Instead of creating one good adventure game, we created 3 below-average games.
And these games mix as easily as water and oil.

I lost all my ties with Quantic Dreams, but I'm pretty sure they still have these problems, with a boss who wants to create too ambitious games, and a team confronted to an unclear direction.
Quantic Dreams also lost a lot of their coders at the end of the first game, due to stress, bad scheduling, and in general a terrible lack of organization.

An anecdote:
the boss wanted that the player might pilot the cars in the city, so we spent 3 weeks of coding to allow that, plus a lot rework of the 3D graphics, since the roads needed to be tagged. Did you know that you could pilot the car manually ?

Re:Interesting (1)

Hellpop (451893) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474594)

That was my problem with Brutal Legend. After playing the demo, I decided against picking it up because it can't decide what it wants to be when it grows up. Driving game, brawling game, RTS. Different controls for each type, different types of health for all types. Way more than I want to keep track of. I'll stick with something simple, like Oblivion...

Re:Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30482994)

These games mix as easily as water and oil.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn3408-oil-and-water-do-mix-after-all.html

Re:Interesting (1)

ruemere (1148095) | more than 4 years ago | (#30485356)

I'd like to say that I really loved Omikron. Yes, there were various design issues with further levels, but getting concerts, following plot and generally walking around made up for that.

Regards,
Ruemere

Re:Interesting (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472454)

How "twitchy" is it? My girlfriend is a big fan of old-school adventure gaming, and her biggest complaint about indigo prophesy was the added twitch element?

If this one doesn't have it, it might be something she'd like (and is due out right around Valentine's Day)

Re:Interesting (1)

sys.stdout.write (1551563) | more than 4 years ago | (#30473098)

this game is the biggest and possibly most important experiment in the past 15 years of gaming

If the future of gaming is quick-time events, we are all F'ed in the A.

For instance, look at how fighting works [youtube.com] (starting at 9:30 in video).

I am all about compelling stories in video games, but there needs to actually be a video game in it.

Re:Interesting (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474112)

If the future of gaming is quick-time events, we are all F'ed in the A.
 

Actually it's B'ed in the A. Then X, Y, Y again, and I'm not sure if its B or A next, but everytime it screws me up and I have to start over again.

Re:Interesting (1)

sammy baby (14909) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474754)

HADUOKEN!

There's a perverse part of me that wants to see classic fighter game (think Devil May Cry) combos adapted for this one. "Architect T-Square Decapitation" has promise.

Re:Interesting (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 4 years ago | (#30473786)

most important experiment?
Am I missing something, Heavy Rain looks like an adventure game just without the puzzles that are solved with WTF logic

Re:Interesting (1)

grumbel (592662) | more than 4 years ago | (#30480472)

The whole control scheme is completly different then your average adventure game. It also happens to be rather different then your average third person game or FPS. And most importantly the whole flow of the game is quite different, its not about hording items, illogical puzzles and cardboard cutout characters, but about presenting a realistic and believable experience, which includes plenty of mundane day-to-day tasks.

Its of course not all 100% fresh ideas, Fahrenheit/IndigoProphecy did a lot of that a few years ago, but then even that game already broke away from a ton of normal adventure game conventions.

So yeah, its quite a bit more then just another adventure game.

Re:Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30474286)

The reason it reminds you of Indigo Prophecy is because it was also made by Quantic Dream.

How Is The PS3 Putting Out Graphics Like This? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470564)

I remember reading all the now obvious blatant bullshit about the PS3 vs 360 graphics hardware on sites like beyond3d.com and others three to four years ago.

And after all that drivel the PS3 has ended up utterly humiliating the 360 like no other console has in history compared to its competitors:

Uncharted
Killzone 2
Uncharted 2
God of War 3
and now Heavy Rain

and most mind boggling is how the PS3 has Gran Turismo 5 running at 1080p 60fps with massively better graphics, more cars on screen at once, etc compared to Microsoft's own Forza that the 360 can only run at 720p. That's 2.25 times the resolution the 360 can handle.

Microsoft absolutely botched the 360 graphics hardware when after four years on the market this is the best it has to show for itself, the crappy old Unreal Engine:

http://kineticninja.blogspot.com/2009_01_01_archive.html

Re:How Is The PS3 Putting Out Graphics Like This? (4, Insightful)

enderjsv (1128541) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470588)

Do we HAVE to turn this into a system war? Can't we instead talk about Heavy Rain?

Re:How Is The PS3 Putting Out Graphics Like This? (5, Funny)

smcn (87571) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470690)

Agreed completely. Besides, everyone already knows that console games will never look as good as on the PC.

LOL! The Xbot Fanboy Is Crying (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470746)

Go back to playing your garbage kiddie fps games Halo and Call of Duty on your RRoDbox assclown.

Re:LOL! The Xbot Fanboy Is Crying (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470752)

Worst troll ever confirmed for Brawl.

What went wrong with the 360 graphics hardware (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470756)

The PS3's complete graphical dominance over the Xbox 360 comes from:

1. Blu-Ray's 25/50 gig storage format versus the Xbox 360's 3.5/7 gig DVD format

2. The insane power of the Broadband Engine(Cell)'s SPUs for cranking through obscene amounts of lighting, animation, physics, transform, or even image buffer calculations

3. The split memory architecture. The RSX side of the PS3 can be cranking away at pixel pushing and (relatively)static vertex transforms while the Cell side of the PS3 can be cranking away at game logic, physics, and pre-rasterize graphics calculations. So you have both sides PS3 running at maximum efficiency without fighting over the same bus. And then within the Broadband Engine the absurdly fast ring bus piping data between the SPUs allow them to crank away in parallel through massive amounts of data

The 360 is just a desktop PC in a console case. It is gimped with the smaller than last gen DVD format, only 10 megs of edram that is too small for a 720p 4xAA frame buffer, and a poorly designed memory architecture. Not really surprising given that Microsoft has no internal competence in console hardware design and they 360 was rushed out the door after Microsoft was forced to pull the plug early on the first Xbox.

Re:What went wrong with the 360 graphics hardware (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472312)

The PS3's complete graphical dominance over the Xbox 360 comes from:

And yet for most cross-platform games, Eurogamer's gloriously technical comparisons tend to come out for the 360 version on actual measurable graphical properties.

I have no doubt that you can work wonders on the PS3 when portability isn't a concern. But for many publishers that's not an option.

Both consoles have their own strengths. When you target one's strengths, you have to make compromises when porting to the other. The pyrotechnic first level of Bayonetta appears to have been designed with the strengths of the 360's GPU in mind. The PS3 port has the effects turned down, yet still runs at a poorer frame rate.

I'm sure you could design a level that pushes the balance towards the PS3. Horses for courses.

Re:What went wrong with the 360 graphics hardware (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30472582)

My god are you a fucking moron.

Re:How Is The PS3 Putting Out Graphics Like This? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470774)

Quality graphics are nothing to do with hardware, and everything to do with hiring artists who have skills beyond "make everything brown and set HDR bloom to maximum."

Stupid rationalization of the day (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470804)

Yep, with Microsoft's and billions and four years on the market they just couldn't find the cash to 'hire artists' who have skills beyond "make everything brown and set HDR bloom to maximum."

It has absolutely nothing to do with the wimpy and poorly designed Xbox 360 graphics hardware...

Re:Stupid rationalization of the day (1)

bronney (638318) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471120)

Dude,

Not everything is cash based. Sure they have the cash to do ANYTHING, but the problem is they also have too many people commenting on those things. From retail box designs, console casing design, menus, voice, and generally everything else. It's not that those commentator are trying to fuck it up, but as soon as you design some stuff and let 100 people see it and say things about it, you inevitably fucks it up in the end. It's human nature.

This is exactly why you feel warm buying from a small no name brand store, or getting that nice handmade scarf from your mom. Pure love, no "intellectual" BS in the way.

Re:How Is The PS3 Putting Out Graphics Like This? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470794)

Mod -1 Offtopic.

PS3 was always more powerful than the 360 before and after release. It was rightly criticised for the difficulty of coding efficient games for it, little has changed on that front but when a developer does actually go the distance, the result will inevitably be better.

So what?

Xbot/PC Fanboy Damage Control Meme Du Jour (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470834)

OMG!

Someone dumb enough to try to downplay the PS3's graphical humiliation of the Xbox 360 this gen with the old Xbot/PC fanboy 'hard teh program' line. Find some new material dipshit.

You fucking Xbot/PC fagotts have got to get your damage control meme straight: 'we never really cared about graphics anyway', 'teh 360 could totally put out PS3 level graphics if Microsoft really wanted' 'PS3 games destroy 360 games only cuz PS3 devs work harder'

Pick one losers and stick with it.

Re:Xbot/PC Fanboy Damage Control Meme Du Jour (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30473556)

Brilliant! I should really pick one, thanks for the tip!

Re:Xbot/PC Fanboy Damage Control Meme Du Jour (1)

brkello (642429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30476740)

From this thread it appears that only Anonymous Cowards like the PS3. Therefore, making the 360 superior.

Actually, I don't care since I will have both, but really...if I was purchasing based on this thread I wouldn't buy a PS3. You guys seem like complete wastes of life.

mature, adult (3, Interesting)

md65536 (670240) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470674)

I hope it stays that way, in North America too. I played Indigo Prophecy, the American version of QD's Fahrenheit. For the American version, they took out "adult" things like sex.

There is a shower scene still in Indigo Prophecy, but the character is showering in her underwear! What an odd confusion of sex and nudity, where it's okay to walk in on someone showering, as long as they're doing it with clothes on! IMHO not a very "mature" way of handling nudity.

(inb4 European vs. American acceptance of nudity)

Interesting but not fun (2, Interesting)

ninjackn (1424235) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470726)

I'm rather puzzled by this "game". It's really unique, the screen shots look gorgeous, I find it really interesting and I want to play it. However I feel as if I'm not going to find it fun, it seems just too heavy and mature.

Maybe it's just a sign of my immaturity. The original half-life is a good example of fun in terms of character interaction. I smack a fellow scientist in the face with a crow bar and he just stands wit his best retort, "what are you doing?" and maybe get the smarts to run away after I smack him a second time. Sometimes he'll just riddle me with dialog until he's on the floor. In Heavy Rain, it seems too close to reality and I wouldn't want to do something like beat my virtual child with a light saber till he runs to his mom, the only choice is the mature adult choice and to let him win.
 
On the other side of the coin it could be a sign of my maturity. I am able to recognize that the game will require deep emotional involvement on my part and it's just something I don't want to invest or experience through a "game".

Re:Interesting but not fun (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470766)

Perhaps you should consider the word "game" more like you consider the word "film." There really isn't anything in the definition of a game that says it must be fun. I mean, chess is a game and it is not exactly the kind of fun that you probably associate with fps video games.

Re:Interesting but not fun (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30471210)

And e.g. many Bergman or von Trier movies are not exactly "fun" either. But they are still fascinating, intriguing and quite often challenging.
Err, and they don't sell well.

Re:Interesting but not fun (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472068)

Indeed! A fascinating, intriguing game wouldn't necessarily sell well either, but for some reason this is still the main metric for "accomplishment" in the games business.

Re:Interesting but not fun (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472002)

Anecdote from the Ars article: The reviewer played a section of the game where he played with his kid, talked with his wife, and helped clean the house. Later on, his real life wife pointed out that he could have played with his real life kid, talked with his real life wife, and helped clean his real life house, and his life would probably be better for it (as his kid would be happier, his wife would be happier, and his house would be tidy).

This isn't a game; It's a Life Sim. A much better one than 2nd "Penisville" Life will ever be.

Real life rarely makes a good game... (4, Interesting)

OverZealous.com (721745) | more than 4 years ago | (#30470824)

When I read the (mostly vague) descriptions of the game in the article, all I could think of was that the author summed up the game early on:

You'll be doing many mundane things: turning lights on and off, cooking dinner, taking a shower. In fact, the first hour of the game seems to exist only to show you how normal your life as an architect and a father is. In that time I did some work, played with my kids, and helped my wife around the house.

After watching me playing the game, my real-life wife made pointed out that I could have actually done some work, helped her around the house, and then played with my kids in the time I had just spent with Heavy Rain. I didn't have a good counter-argument.

(Emphasis Mine)

I'm aware that there is more to the game than this, but I think what makes a video game interesting is the way it abstracts you from the real world. How is this game going to abstract mundane details of everyday life in a way that isn't just boring? It's too bad the author didn't expand on any more details.

There really isn't anything in this review that makes me think the game shows promise, despite the Slashvertisment's summary.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30470884)

I think it's mostly because it dares to try something new. Originality is a rare quality in videogames today.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (3, Funny)

DreamsAreOkToo (1414963) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471032)

Now we need to make robots that are hooked up to these games. That way, when you play Heavy Rain, the robot can play with your kid and do some work. Heck, you can mix it up some by going on xbox live and playing with someone else's kid! Think of the possibilities!

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

rdnetto (955205) | more than 4 years ago | (#30482770)

Heck, you can mix it up some by going on xbox live and playing with someone else's kid!

I'm pretty sure you just made it onto the FBI watch list (or equivalent).

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (2, Insightful)

a0schweitzer (1702404) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471102)

I think games like this serve to further gaming as an art form, which is something that isn't done nearly enough. Sadly, the common perception of games is that they are for children, and that adults who play them are silly and unwilling to grow up. Sure, casual games are changing this, but only becasue their casual nature makes them easier for 'adults' to accept and enjoy. Making games serious will allow gaming to advance as an artistic medium. The mundane details, as you put it, allow for introspection, and show that gaming can have much, much deeper meaning than is normally attributed to it. If games continue to be made in such a style, they can have a much greater impact than movies (for example), due to their immersive nature. Imagine watching a provocative and thought-provoking artistic film, and compare the impact that can have to the potential impact of actually making the decisions within the story, if the story were to be told through a game. I suppose you're right, this game doesn't look fun, but I think it can help to further games as an art form.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (4, Insightful)

OverZealous.com (721745) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471230)

I'm not trying to pick a fight, but I disagree (a little).

I recently was replaying Shadow of the Colossus. To me, there is a game that exemplifies art. It was beautiful to watch, immersive, playing it was unlike anything I had played before, and the story was deep and dramatic. (It even ended on a sad note for those who believe that anything that makes you happy can't be art.)

Forcing someone to play through an hour of boring, everyday tasks is less than art. It's not even very creative (in my opinion). How many movies and books and other things have been made that focus on everyday things?

Or, for that matter, how many games already been made where the user gets to choose between decisions (Black-and-White, Fate [I think], that one with the biological superhero)? Every time, while the game is interesting, the decision making process is hampered by the vary fact that a game is limited to what the designers have already though up. Currently, decision-based games are more like choose-your-own-adventure books. The decisions are more thrown in to add "replay value" than to truly give the user choices. (Save the baby, or let it die? Play it twice, to see the different cut-scenes! Yay, more hours of gameplay...)

The gaming medium as art has to be more than just taking a movie or book and slapping lame controls on it. That's like doing a crayon drawing in oils, and calling it art. It needs to incorporate what makes games different than the other mediums.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

anarchyboy (720565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472880)

Forcing people to do everyday tasks in a computer game may not be original but that doesn't mean that it can't be artistic. That's a bit like saying that Sunflowers doesn't count as art because people had painted pictures of flowers before.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

Afty0r (263037) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474798)

How many movies and books and other things have been made that focus on everyday things?

Most movies put you through on "introductory" sequence which can last 10, 20, 30 minutes or more and is often boring and mundane buts acts as an introduction to the characters and is necessary to set the scene...

Having a 9mm in someones' hand during the opening credits can make for an action-packed film, but rarely makes one empathise with a character.

One of the best films of the year, 500 Days Of Summer was about JUST everyday things...

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (2, Interesting)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30475312)

In a way, a game should let you escape, immediately, outside the bounds of your mundane world. This is why people play Counterstrike, Left4Dead, Wolverine, etc. You leave the mowing of the lawns for the emptying of the clip as soon as the game is done loading. But there's a way to tell a story -- the build-up, the foreshadowing, and mostly, in terms of fantasy (fantasty/scifi/horror), to note the way things should have been had something not significantly changed. It sounds like Hard Rain is going to be like a book -- it's not going to throw you into a gunfight or a zombie massacre in the first page. It wants you to sit down, get involved with the characters, so that when they are pinned to a wall by a demon having their throats ripped out, you'll be thinking, "Dammit! He has T-ball in the morning!" and you'll care...even from your comfy computer chair.

1) Action game: You love your wife. She means the world to you. Zombies are attacking her. What do you do?

2) Story:
"Hi, honey. I'm home!"
(From the kitchen)"Wow. Just like yesterday. Coincidence?"
"Hah. Hah. Did you manage to find my bowtie for tonight? The award ceremony's in a couple hours."
"Yes, sir. Found it, sir."
"What's that supposed to mean?" (hangs up his coat)
"It means that you go from disorganized computer nerd to commander-in-chief whenever there's something that specifically involves you."
(groaning)"Mmm. We don't have to go. I'm sure someone will accept the award for me." (heads towards kitchen door)
"No no. I'm already dressed...."
(Opens the kitchen door to find his wife seated with her legs on the table wearing a bowtie...and nothing else.)
"Oh, we should skip it..."
"No way." She lets him pick her up. "I think we can manage both."
(As our reluctant hero carries her through the living room to their den of iniquity, their front door is struck so hard it nearly breaks the hinges. Slobbering and drooling can be heard from the other side...)

In #2, the zombies are secondary. They are the obstruction to the normalcy you'd rather be enjoying.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30477918)

How many movies and books and other things have been made that focus on everyday things?

You have to ask that question?

How many drama movies are there? Romance movies? A lot I would wager.

Not all movies are about action heroes or people with superpowers even if those are the only ones you choose to see. [Not that I'm inclined to blame you]

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

grumbel (592662) | more than 4 years ago | (#30480804)

Or, for that matter, how many games already been made where the user gets to choose between decisions

I don't know how it will be in Heavy Rain, but what made Fahrenheit/IndigoProphicy great was that the decisions didn't really matter. It was not the BioWare-way of doing where you have idiotic black/white choices of "feed baby" or "eat baby", but simply different things you could do. Which gave the game a great feel of interactivity, without allowing you to break the story in any out-of-character manner. That way of doing things also removed basically all the illogical adventure-type puzzles from the game, as you could do things in different ways or in different orders, but it where all small interactive things (where to hide a knife, bandage bloody arms before taking with police or not, etc.), not black and white decisions.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30471156)

If your day revolves around rescuing hookers, investigating serial killers and seducing creepy guys in nightclubs, that's really fine with me.
Mine doesn't, so the game seems interesting enough to me.

Adding mundane things can improve a game if the object is not the mundane actions, but a deeper immersion in a story.
Any good story I know contains lots of mundane parts that are not necessary for the story, but are still essential to make it work.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30471222)

I imagine the fun part of the game comes in once you play through the normal, mundane hour and shit goes very wrong and you start doing detective work. The first hour is to establish your life, as the article says. Then your life goes sideways.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472794)

An hour is a long time to do mundane crap. I should know.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (3, Funny)

ProppaT (557551) | more than 4 years ago | (#30473068)

Tell me about it. I've been reading comments here for half an hour now and it already seems like an eternity.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

eoin_tbo (1485851) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471688)

Was it actually ah hour of doing mundane tasks or did it seem like an hour?

Movies do this scene-setting, baseline normality at the start as well but they usually only last 10-20 mins. Anything beyond that and they can seem to drag. I would have thought that at an hour you'd have most people dying to do something interesting. You need to be a paid reviewer or very bored to push through that kind of barrier without turning off the pc.

For most gamers the novelty of "ooh look I can do everyday things on a computer" wears thing very quickly. Sometime back in deus ex when you could use the can machine and flush the toilet. (Those being incidental to the main action of deus ex while with heavy rain it seems more central)

All that being said I'd love to give this game a whirl to see how it plays out.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30471734)

Similarly, all media featuring any sort of realism or mundane elements are never worth anyone's time. All fiction must completely deviate from reality.

Heavy Rain? Fuck that, why not just have your kid murdered in real life, lose your wife and job in real life, become an alcoholic in real life, go on the trail of a serial killer in real life, and experience reality from the perspective of multiple people... in real life? Game is worthless, no point in playing something when it's just a mundane replica of a mundane reality.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474824)

Most games sacrifice story telling in favor of action. And that's generally a good approach.

Iif you're going to make a game that is fundamentally about the story, then you need a fully realized first act. The first act in most games consists of as little as a blurb in the manual, or, at best, a two minute (skippable) cut-scene. Assuming that this game (story) runs over ten hours, spending an hour establishing the characters doesn't seem at all excessive to me.

-Peter

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30477610)

I'm aware that there is more to the game than this, but I think what makes a video game interesting is the way it abstracts you from the real world. How is this game going to abstract mundane details of everyday life in a way that isn't just boring?

This. There's a reason characters in films rarely spend any time doing laundry.

Hopefully the designers "get" this. I'm still hopeful for his title but the above makes me concerned.

Re:Real life rarely makes a good game... (1)

grumbel (592662) | more than 4 years ago | (#30480634)

I'm aware that there is more to the game than this, but I think what makes a video game interesting is the way it abstracts you from the real world.

The problem is that games these days aren't much good at showing you something fresh anymore, as there are way to many gaming cliches that have stacked up over the years and way to many games are just clones of previous years games.

So fighting space aliens might sound exciting to somebody who never played a game, but as a gamer thats pretty much what I have been doing for the last 20 years and its really not that interesting anymore. On the other side having a game that lets you drink orange juice in a realistic manner, is certainly something fresh again as I haven't seen that in a game.

Also of course the mundane tasks aren't the whole game, they are just the setup to the greater crime story in the game and they are there so that you get a better feel for the characters. Instead of being random-nameless JohnDoe, the characters in Heavy Rain have a background, family, friends and jobs.

QTE (1)

valentingalea (1039734) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471418)

This - exactly like its 'prequel' Indigo Profecy - looks gorgeous, has lots of cool ideas but in the end is one big QTE fest.

I wonder why they kept movement with the joystick instead of putting a QTE for each step forward:P

Expect the worst, hope for the best (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 4 years ago | (#30471836)

Same people that brought you Indigo Prophecy. Good idea, and the first half the game was great, then you got to the second half of the game that went snooker loopy [escapistmagazine.com] . So I'll reserve judgement till I get a chance to play the whole thing.

Re:Expect the worst, hope for the best (1)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472156)

They've done the same thing with previous titles, like Omikron: the Nomad Soul. Basically they give you a demo that looks like it has an incredible amount of detail and flexibility, then put you on a poorly scripted rail shortly after the first area.

Re:Expect the worst, hope for the best (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30473280)

Just remember.. It is never too late to talk to your game developer about indigo prophesy prophecy..

Boring (1, Insightful)

Rumagent (86695) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472190)

This game represents everything I hate about modern games. Apparently we want better lighting, better animations more life-like graphics. This striving for hyper-realism is driving me nuts.

The computer allows us to make everything, and yet we insist on creating worlds that are essentially no different from the one we live in. Where is the weird, the fantastic, the horrible and the wonderful? Why do we settle, when we can have anything? When do we start creating art?

Re:Boring (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#30472350)

Where is the weird, the fantastic, the horrible and the wonderful?

Bayonetta? Brutal Legend? Katamari? Bit.Trip.Beat?

Why do we settle, when we can have anything? When do we start creating art?

There's room for both. Some people like Miley Cyrus, some people like Radiohead. Likewise in games. Some people like the hyper-realism of Forza Motorsport; some people like the artistic graphics of Viewtiful Joe

Re:Boring (1)

Jonathan (5011) | more than 4 years ago | (#30477822)

The computer allows us to make everything, and yet we insist on creating worlds that are essentially no different from the one we live in. Where is the weird, the fantastic, the horrible and the wonderful? Why do we settle, when we can have anything? When do we start creating art?

Normally, "art" *is* about creating worlds that are essentially no different from the one we live in. Mass market movies and genre novels are all about aliens, explosions, and dashing adventurers. Art movies and literary fiction are generally about realistic stories -- people coping with a divorce or the death of their child, things like that.

Re:Boring (1)

grumbel (592662) | more than 4 years ago | (#30480876)

Where is the weird, the fantastic, the horrible and the wonderful?

There are a lot more games that present the weird and fantastic (just look at every second indie game) then there are games that present realistic everyday life. By far most games of course are still about presenting the life of an military action hero, so Heavy Rain is definitively a big change of pace.

Will they ever learn? (1)

ProppaT (557551) | more than 4 years ago | (#30473006)

Apparently the industry doesn't learn from past mistakes. I thought it was pretty clear that we didn't want this when Shenmue was released, and then again when Shenmue II was released. I suppose the logic this time is "Oh, but the graphics are like 100x's better, people will buy it. And, to a degree, I suppose they're right. It'll sell...at least enough to make the money back. To the same people who liked Shenmue and possibly games like Myst. It'll also sell to people who always buy whatever game currently has the hottest graphics. Reviewers will be besides themselves not knowing whether to review the game based on art and concept or based on gameplay or lack there of. But it will probably be rememebered as another game that looks pretty, yet has no depth.

No, I'm not an action fan. I'm actually a pretty big RPG fan, which is the one part of me that wants to hold onto hope everytime a game like this is released. I've always thought a non-action sandbox game such as this, but with an odd twist (think Groundhogs Day or Back to the Future) would be tremendous, but they always turn into sloppy detective games.

Re:Will they ever learn? (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#30474486)

The industry is learning. They're learning that there's room for more than yet another JRPG or FPS. Yeah, I'm not big on the QTE mechanic, and wish that adventure games would go back to point and click. But this is better than nothing. I'd still love to see a Shenmue III BTW.

Re:Will they ever learn? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30480956)

While QTE might not work for every game, point&click really has run its course and it needs to be replaced ASAP. The game mechanics of the adventure genre haven't really changed much in 20 years, since Maniac Mansion came out and they have really run rather stale at this point.

One of the nice things of Fahrenheit/IndigoProphecy was how it moved away from the normal item hording and contrived puzzles, instead the game gave you a believable interactive world. Where your actions where much more realistic. It also had some nice elements in the control scheme, that while not really important for the game, did a good thing to enhance the interactive feel, for example you opened doors with your analog stick and it wasn't a simple flat animation, but instead the speed of your sticks movement determined how fast your character would open the door.

Heavy Rain seems to improve on that even more, by for example including action icons into the scene instead of just in a flat HUD.

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